This beauty tried to steal the cat’s dinner. Is it a buzzard? Readers’ nature queries

Ethna Viney on goldcrests, pine martens, herons, scarlet elf cap and red squirrels

I spotted this beauty trying to steal the cat's dinner. The cat didn't argue. Is it a buzzard? – Jim Murphy, Drogheda, Co Louth
Yes, it's a buzzard. Discretion is the better part of valour, if cats have valour.

We knew there were goldcrests in our garden, having trapped one in the greenhouse three years ago. Imagine our delight when this one stayed on the kitchen window long enough to allow photographs. – Gráinne & Shay Tuohy, Kilmacthomas, Co Waterford

This was a first-time sighting of a pine marten on my window sill. Only previous sighting was on the beach at Enniscrone, Co Sligo two years ago. We live on a farm and have an abundance of all other wildlife. – David McHugh, Cortown, Co Meath

I found these fungi in the undergrowth in the garden .They were very striking to look at, shining red in the spring sunshine. – Brigid Glynn, Strandhill, Co Sligo
They are scarlet elf cap and appear at this time of year.

This heron was staking out our pond at the end of January. Seems a bit early. He got at least three frogs. I'm hoping there will be enough left to spawn. – Fiona Keogh, Dún Laoghaire, Co Dublin
Herons are around all year. You'll need to net your pond to save your fish.

We had a visit from a very energetic and athletic red squirrel. He raided the bird feeders and knocked them down. The birds all flocked around, twittering and squawking, amazed at the intruder. – Tim O'Sullivan, Thomastown, Co Kilkenny

I found this creature on the coastal path between Portmarnock Beach and High Rock. Would a bird or a seagull have dropped it? – Deirdre Quinn, Portmarnock, Dublin 13
It's a squid and certainly could have been dropped by a seagull.

Ethna Viney welcomes observations and photographs at Thallabawn, Louisburgh, Co Mayo, F28 F978, or by email at Please include a postal address.

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